Thinking about getting into cycling. I'd like a road bike to ride around the beautiful areas of my new home - Clifton Park, NY. I have been running around the area 5-8 mi every session and I'm thinking that cycling may deter some of the wear and tear on my body instead of running..
With that said, I have been looking at road bikes and have a few ideas in mind:
I don't care about the latest and greatest, so a last year's model that provides somewhat of a discount would be great.
I'd prefer a $1500 2014 model that's been marked down to say $1000 instead of getting a 'lesser' 2015 model at msrp.
I realize fit is important, so what would be a good LBS to check out? I walked into Elevate Cycles, and it didn't quite jive with me - seemed a little too yuppie with over-marked, over-priced bicycles and not a lot of selection.. there was more of a Tour de Clifton/France feel there that I'm not quite ready for or ready to open my wallet up for.
I'd prefer aluminum - I'm not racing and from what I hear carbon seems like a bad choice if you're not a super star athlete.
I'd prefer better / higher quality components that are going to go further as opposed to the 'latest and greatest' reduced weight frame, etc. If I'm doing this for fitness and well being wouldn't a slightly heavier bike make me push more anyhow but I'd appreciate the quality of good components?
I'd love to be able to order a discounted bike via the 'net but without knowing fit, size, etc it makes that a bit more difficult.
What could / should be a realistic budget for a decent, quality road bike and gear. Should I expect +$500 for gear and accessories to my $1000 discounted from last year bicycle? Is this an unrealistic number for both items to get from a LBS? Am I going to need a car rack to drive the new bike back home from the store?
What budget / bike / bike store should I be looking at? Are my expectations reasonable or unreasonable?
Should I try/ask to ride other's bicycles or take for a spin to get an idea of what feels good or not?
I'm 6'1''-6'1.5'' depending on who is measuring, 32'' inseam, longer torso than legs I'd say, 220lbs, (ex-highschool athlete, ex-crossfit athlete, ex-swimmer)
Also, I wear a 11.5'' wide for running shoes.. I hope that clip shoes come in wides?
Thank you finally, for entertaining my long list of ideas however incorrect they might be